Starting “rcvry” in some ways wasn’t an easy choice – I had managed, in my own recovery, to resurrect my career, I was in a good job in the city earning good money and for the first time in a long time, life was stable and comfortable. After many years of no stability and living in the chaos of addiction, this probably should have been enough, and for a time, it really was. But there was a constant nagging feeling of unease – I wasn’t feeling fufilled, and I wasn’t feeling like I was doing what I should be doing with my new found ability to manage life more effectively.
And so, whilst difficult to wave good bye to the financial security such as it felt, on the other hand it became an easy decision, because one of the many important lessons I’ve learnt on my journey, is that money does not bring happiness – and maybe more importantly, doing something you love and that is rewarding is about as good as it can get,
If you’re reading this and are still in the grips of active addiction, let me reassure you that those toxic thoughts of “what will I do if I’m not drinking – life would be so boring” could not be further from the reality of sober life, but as with a lot of our thinking when active, it’s so warped that it feels impossible to connect to the real World and the opportunities that await us there.
One of the 5 elements of my program is “purpose” – and I think purpose plays a leading role in the production of my “why am I doing this” mind show. For a long time, even in recovery, my purpose was either non existent, or was very short term focused, and quite often, quite selfish.
It went from stay sober for an hour, to stay sober for a day, then a week, then a month, then a year, until eventually staying sober wasn’t enough of a purpose alone to motivate me daily.
Then my purposes became a little more wide reaching – maintain a meaningful relationship, treat the person in that relationship right, get and hold down a decent job, give 100% at that job, be healthy, do 10k steps a day – you see all sorts of fairly positive, habit forming purposes, but they were all probably to achievable in some ways.
During all this time though, I kept experiencing a recurring experience that constantly left me feeling good – an ability to listen and help others through sharing the different experiences I was trialling in order to become a more optimal person. It took a long time for the penny to drop, but eventually it did – my own recovery from addiction, and the ongoing personal development I was experiencing, was not down to any one thing – it was down to multiple things all working together. The moment I realised this, I SERIOUSLY began researching.
Like a lot of addicts, I have that sort of nature that when I get started on something, I’m like a dog with a bone – I want to know everything, I want to be the best at it – I can’t rest until I feel as if I am an expert at what I’m trying to study and understand.
I realised that diet was playing a big part in my energy levels and also in my cravings for sugar / alcohol – so I watched every documentary ( and believe me there are loads ) on healthy eating, from veganism, to juicing, to fasting – you name it I studied it. I went a step further – not only did I study but I also trialled everything I read about. I’m big believer in walking the walk as well as talking the talk, so that’s what I did.
Spiritually I studied ( and continue to study ) everything from chakras, to Tarot to aura’s – I started realising the concept of there being a life energy that we don’t tap into in our modern, logical World as being a reality. The more i learned and practised, the more I realised that to reach a recovery point that I could move forward from and actually start to excel in life again, I needed to tackle 5 fundamental area’s – and that’s where my 5 elements of optimal were born from.
It was around this time that I relaised, that for me personally, the traditional 12 step program, which had done such a great job during that first 12 – 18 months of sobriety, wasn’t really taking me forward anymore. I wouldn’t hear a bad word said against AA – it saved my life in many ways, so it’s not a criticism i’m making – I just felt it wasn’t doing the job of helping become the best me, and I recognised that some of the ways it worked were outdated in this modern World.
I started to become almost evangelical in talking about how I was keeping myself in a good shape, mentally and physically, and the more I spoke, the more other people wanted to listen and practise what I was talking about, and lo and behold, people who were suffering from addiction started to tell me that the program I had loosely explained to them was working. They felt better. But, they wanted more. They needed some structure, and they needed to understand what each element really meant – so I spent the next 6 months researching even more, and putting together what you can access through this site – a simple, but rewarding program that will give you the tools to beat your addiction, and also help you become the best person you can be – in most cases, beyond what you could even imagine right now.
I had discovered a purpose that really motivates me and drives me, – help other people become optimal.